RING WITHOUT WORDS
James Gaffigan, conductor
Fantasy kingdoms, scandalous love affairs, dwarfs, giants, and powerful music. Game of Thrones? Tolkien? Actually, before those came the Ring cycle, Wagner’s master achievement in his quest to create an all-encompassing theatrical experience. Conductor James Gaffigan returns to lead the CSO in a concert compilation of Wagner’s four epic operas, on a program that opens with two musical gems: Bacewicz’s delightfully bracing Overture and Mozart’s well-known Eine kleine Nachtmusik.
MOZART: Eine kleine Nachtmusik (Serenade in G Major)
WAGNER: Der Ring ohne Worte für Orchester ("The Ring Without Words")
Aaron McKone, tenor, Laërte
Nmon Ford, baritone, Spectre
Mark Hockenberry, bass, Polonius
Logan Wagner, tenor, Marcellus /
Michael Anthony McGee, bass-
baritone, Horatio / gravedigger
Robert Porco, director
"To be or not to be….” French composer Ambroise Thomas’ grand opera is a musical setting of Shakespeare’s story of the melancholic Prince Hamlet, his murderous uncle, ghostly father,and lover driven to madness. Louis Langrée leads the CSO and May Festival Chorus in this new touring production created in collaboration with Paris’ famed Opéra Comique.
BRAHMS: RUNNICLES & TRIFONOV
Sir Donald Runnicles, conductor
Daniil Trifonov, piano
Sir Donald Runnicles, celebrated for his interpretations of Romantic symphonic repertoire, leads an all-Brahms program, joining forces with powerhouse pianist Daniil Trifonov, following his stunning solo Music Hall performance in 2022. Together, they explore Brahms’ more brooding and emotional side in his Piano Concerto No. 1. Runnicles then conducts the CSO in Brahms’ Symphony No. 2, from its iconic “lullaby” to its cheerfully triumphant and brass-filled finale.
BRAHMS: Piano Concerto No. 1
BRAHMS: Symphony No. 2
BRAHMS' GERMAN REQUIEM
With prayerful music for both the living and the dead, the source of comfort in Brahms’ German Requiem is as much human as it is the divine. Louis Langrée leads the CSO along with the May Festival Chorus in Brahms’ large-scale masterpiece. Though Brahms was often discreet in nature, this is a deeply personal work. Spurred by the loss of his mother, and influenced by lingering emotions of self-doubt, he turned to his true religion – music – as a way to console not only himself, but others as well.
BRAHMS: Ein Deutsches Requiem ("A German Requiem")
COPLAND’S APPALACHIAN SPRING
Matthias Pintscher, conductor
Conrad Tao, piano
As the winter winds quell and the flowers of spring begin to blossom, CSO Creative Partner Matthias Pintscher conducts the Orchestra in works capturing the feeling of life beginning anew. Copland’s Appalachian Spring shines with the “Simple Gifts” of the season. After wowing CSO audiences in 2021 and 2022, pianist Conrad Tao returns for the world premiere of a CSO commissioned work from composer inti figgis-vizueta, whose music “feels sprouted between structures” (The Washington Post). Then, Schumann's Symphony No. 1 triumphantly ushers in the spring season.
COPLAND: Suite from Appalachian Spring
inti figgis-vizueta: New Piano Concerto, (CSO Commission, World Premiere)
SCHUMANN: Symphony No. 1, Spring
DVOŘÁK SYMPHONY NO. 8
Dvořák’s Symphony No. 8 is filled with optimistic and lyrical music, leading to a finale of fanfares and dances. Conductor Katharina Wincor, who led the May Festival's 2022 production of Candide, returns to Music Hall and welcomes cellist Sheku Kanneh-Mason for Shostakovich's raw and rhythmic first Cello Concerto.
SHOSTAKOVICH: Festive Overture
SHOSTAKOVICH: Cello Concerto No. 1
DVOŘÁK: Symphony No. 8
LOUIS' GRAND FINALE
In his final program as Music Director, Louis Langrée and the CSO share the stage one more time for a performance that will pay tribute to highlights of their time together over the past 11 years. Grammy Award-winning soprano Latonia Moore will join the CSO for the world premiere of a new orchestral song cycle by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Anthony Davis, whose piece You Have the Right to Remain Silent profoundly impacted Louis and left a poignant impression on livestream viewers at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The program also includes Ravel’s mythical and airy Daphnis et Chloé Suite No. 2, a work that Louis and the Orchestra performed on tour in Hong Kong, Beijing and Shanghai in 2017; Beethoven’s Leonore Overture No. 2, which was last performed in 2015 as part of that season’s One City, One Symphony initiative; and Dukas’ The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, which was a part of an all-French program that opened the Orchestra’s 2018-19 season at the newly renovated Music Hall.
Expect moving music and memories, celebrating the final performances of the CSO’s beloved Music Director.
LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN: Leonore Overture No. 2
ANTHONY DAVIS: New Orchestral Song Cycle (CSO Commission, World Premiere)
PAUL DUKAS: The Sorcerer’s Apprentice
MAURICE RAVEL: Daphnis et Chloé Suite No. 2